The Physics Classroom Question Bank CD

"Writing good quizzes and tests for your physics course just became a whole lot easier … and a whole lot faster. With The Physics Classroom's Question Bank, you will be able to create, edit, and perfect that next test in considerably less time."

What is it?

The Physics Classroom has recently completed the production of a Question Bank CD to accompany The Physics Classroom website. With more than 9300 questions neatly organized according to topic, the question bank is the perfect tool for busy teachers. Even if you don't use the website with your classes, the Question Bank CD will assist you in quickly putting together quizzes, tests and other documents with high-quality questions that target student's conceptions of physics principles. And if you do use The Physics Classroom website, the Question Bank CD is the perfect complement to the materials found at the website.

What is on the CD?

The CD contains several Microsoft Word files* that are neatly formatted and organized in folders with intuitive file and folder names. There are five different collections of questions. These collections are described on the CD Contents page. Additionally, the CD contains more than 2000 image files that have been saved as .png files (portable network graphics). The image files are the images that are used in the more than 9300 questions.

What can I use the CD for?

The intended use of the Question Bank CD is to assist teachers in creating quizzes and tests. However, we can easily imagine many other uses of the question banks and the included image files. There will be teachers who will want to use some questions as discussion starters, as bell-ringer questions, as exit questions, and as homework questions. Other teachers will be thrilled by the more than 2000 image files that can be easily imported into PowerPoint presentations. Other teachers will want to include the questions on worksheets, review sheets, and homework assignments. And we hope that many teachers will be motivated to use the CD question banks as a starting point for organizing their own questions with ours so that they can begin to develop a useful bank of personalized questions for their courses. The possibilities of how to use the questions are nearly endless and only restricted by the licensing agreement discussed below.

What are the technical requirements for using the CD?

The Microsoft Word application is not included on the CD. To use the CD, teachers must own a legal copy of Microsoft Word. To take full advantage of the CD, teachers should have a basic understanding of how to use the Microsoft Word application. This understanding includes how to open, save, and create new documents and how to copy a portion of a document and paste that portion into another document at the desired location.

What is the licensing agreement for its use?

The CD comes with a licensing agreement that permits the user the right to use the questions with their students and with other students in their own school. The questions can be used in any document or project that is distributed or viewable only by students of that school. The contents of the CD cannot be posted in any location that can be viewed by the general public or by students and teachers from other schools. This prohibits the use of the questions on websites, CDs, and other storage media, and other projects that are not password protected from the wider population (e.g., students and teachers from other schools). Purchasers of the CD are also prohibited from using the questions in any for-profit ventures.

Who would benefit from purchasing the CD?

The Physics Classroom believes that any teacher - from the seasoned veteran to the first-year teacher - would benefit from the use of the CD. Whether you are looking to create a set of tests for a new course, rewrite the tests for an existing course, or prepare a collection of makeup tests, the CD would facilitate any of these tasks. Whether you are a first year teacher, a first-time physics teacher crossing over from biology-, chemistry-, or math-teaching, or a veteran teacher whose been teaching since Newton's day, the Question Bank CD is likely to be of great benefit. Whether you're a busy teacher juggling a couple of coaching duties and activities with a full load of teaching and grading or simply wishing to save some time on writing tests, the CD will be a much-appreciated time-saver.

How will it help me?

If you have difficulty writing quizzes, tests, or exams or simply confront time restraints that limit your ability to create good quizzes, tests, or exams, then the Question Bank CD may be the solution to your predicament. Or if you are a new teacher or a crossover physics teacher, the Question Bank CD will provide you with a large sampling of questions that target conceptual understandings in physics. Or if you have an interest in creating a collection of multiple choice assessments that can be scanned and scored by an electronic scanner, the Question Bank CD will get your collection of assessments created quite quickly. Or if you are simply looking to expand upon your existing set of questions, the Question Bank CD will provide a rather rapid expansion.

What are the questions like?

Approximately 80% of the questions are forced-choice style questions. This includes true-false, multiple-choice, and multiple select questions. The remaining questions involve a calculation with a numerical response, a written statement, the completion of a sentence, or the construction of a diagram or graph. As for topics addressed by the question banks, it's worth taking a look at the CD Contents page.

Are there any redundancies in the five collections?

To be honest, there are some redundancies. Those familiar with the Minds On Physics Internet Modules know that each assignment in the collection of modules consist of as many as 40 questions. These questions are grouped into sets of two to four questions with questions in each group being very similar to one another. Additionally, a small percentage of the questions in MOP will show up in the other collections. When they do reappear in other collections, they are often reworded or reduced to five options to make them useable with electronic scanning forms. Despite these minor redundancies, The Physics Classroom is confident that users of the CD will have plenty of questions to choose from.

How can I be sure the Question Banks will open with my version of Microsoft Word?

That's a great question and one you should give consideration to before purchasing the CD. We anticipate that users of the CD may have a wide range of versions of Microsoft Word. As such, we have saved every test bank in two different file formats - a file format for older versions (named as fileNameO.doc) and a file format for more current versions (named as fileNameC.docx).

Does the CD contain answers to the questions?

Answers are not included on the CD … nor will there ever be. While every effort will be made to make the CD a teacher-only resource, we recognize that someday a student is likely to circumvent all the pre-cautions that we take to prevent the CD from falling into student hands. As such, The Physics Classroom feels most comfortable making only the questions available. Besides, it's safe to presume that if a teacher were uncertain of any of the answers to the questions, then those questions would not be good candidates for a quiz or test.

Who shouldn't buy the CD?

The Physics Classroom will not ship the CD to students or parents and will not refund the full amount of the purchase price if purchased by students or parents using the PayPal option. We do ask for means of validating that the purchaser is a teacher or school (hone number, school email, school address, etc.) and we do check before shipping. The CD is strictly a for-teacher offering.

How do I purchase it?

The Question Bank CD can be easily purchased using the PayPal button on the Purchase page. The PayPal button allows you to make payment via a credit card, a PayPal account, or a bank transfer. Teachers who would rather pay using a school purchase order can download an order form from the Purchase page.

The Question Bank CD is one more example of how The Physics Classroom offers user-friendly, classroom-ready resources that serve students, teachers and classrooms.

* Use of the CD requires that teachers own a legal copy of Microsoft Word.

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